in the long held tradition of the ateneo, fr. villarin, ateneo president not only upholds independent thinking but more importantly appreciates the 192 professors who have released a statement of their support on the rh bill. the latter to me was unexpected.
some weeks ago, the ateneo professors released a statement where 160 of them stated their support for the rh bill, calling for congress to pass the bill. that caught the attention of the rh bill advocates and was one of the most talked about among groups involved on the bill.
then just a few days ago, the same group of ateneo professors released another statement saying an additional 33 professors signed on to their statement of support for the rh bill.
that once again caught the attention of opposing forces on the rh bill debate and this time included traditional media. it helped that that was the time that president aquino included the rh bill on his SONA and it was causing excitement in congress. the renewed interest and strong publicity of the statement of the ateneo professors supporting the rh bill also caught the attention of the CBCP and a permanent member of it.
CBCP member bishop medroso has said the ateneo professors who aired their support for the rh bill should be investigated to see if they should be fired for teaching the rh bill at the ateneo. the CBCP opposes the rh bill.
bishop medroso says the ateneo being a catholic school should toe the line of the CBCP on the rh bill. according to him by implication, ateneo can lose its recognition as a catholic school and the professors their jobs if they teach their students their support to the rh bill in the classrooms.
as a reaction to the growing and very loud voices on the ateneo professors’ statements, this letter was released by fr. villarin. it was released very quickly, just one day after the threat of the bishop was written up in the press.
the letter states that it recognizes the individual stand of the professors in their support of the rh bill and accepts that there are divergent views on the rh bill and the ateneo professors position is one of them.
the most important part is that he does not sanction the ateneo professors for their stand supporting the rh bill which is contrary to the school’s stand and the CBCP. the CBCP bishop was in less than subtle terms wanted the sanction.
bishop wants pro rh bill Ateneo professors fired – hahahaha – http://wp.me/pnw03-1DB
fr. villarin even goes on to give the ateneo professors encouragement, saying they should “continue in their discernment of the common good“, appreciating the intent the professors stated in their position paper which was to help the poor, saying “I appreciate their social compassion and intellectual efforts“.
we thought that the last part on the “intellectual efforts” was not just a recognition of the high quality work and thinking the professors put into their statement but also a subtle allusion to the quality, or lack of it, of the discourse from anti rh bill proponents.
Church Of The Gesu At The Ateneo De Manila University
it is very clear that in this letter, fr. villarin:
- ignores, rebukes and delivers a slap in the face of the CBCP and the bishop who was calling for the ateneo professors to be fired from their teaching jobs at the ateneo
- key here is fr. villarin has stated no sanctions of any sort or censure on the ateneo professors. this is the exact opposite of what the cbcp and the bishop wanted
- he sees the action of the ateneo professors in a very different light from what the bishop was trying to say
- the ateneo agrees to disagree with the ateneo professors as fr. villarin states that the ateneo as a catholic school opposes the passage of the rh bill
- respects the opposing view of the ateneo professors and allows them to pursue their views as the professors see fit
- states that the school has been teaching in the classrooms the anti rh bill position of the school and the CBCP. this is important as this establishes the CBCP may not sanction ateneo as it is in fact teaching its position.
- that sets up the point that the statement released by the professors are indeed just their individual and personal view on the rh bill and thus cannot be sanctioned by the school or the CBCP. fr. villarin has drawn a differentiation between what the professors teach in the classroom and what they say as individuals. the latter goes to freedom of expression and academic freedom.
- although obviously unstated, we think fr. villarin is pro rh bill. he just could not say it being the president of the catholic school ateneo. not saying comes within the territory of his job as president of the catholic school he heads.
- rather than calling for the non passage of the rh bill, fr. villarin is calling for amendments to the bill.
- he also probably thinks the rh bill will be passed, saying that the community should work for making sure no coercion is done in its implementation allowing for people to exercise free will to decide to avail or not avail any of the components of the rh bill.
- the letter shows a very keen appreciation of the pro-poor and pro-people stance of the ateneo professors in their support of the rh bill. we think it is obvious from here that fr. villarin together with the ateneo professors believe and practice in being “man for others”
- upholds the ateneo tradition of encouraging, in fact teaching informed independent thinking, inclusive of whether it agrees or disagrees with its own position. this is a tradition in the school. if the students are taught this, why shouldn’t it allow the professors to exercise the same?
- we think this one of the strongest statements in that letter : “Nevertheless, Catholic tradition has always taught that reason and faith are not enemies but allies in the service of God’s truth.” reason here refers to the position paper released by the ateneo professors while faith refers to the position of the CBCP, the bishop and the university. he is saying here that they really should not clash or one cancel the other, and that in fact both can be combined to reach the “service of God’s truth”. he is saying both are right and not one is wrong over the other.
- in saying both are right and not one is wrong over the other has the effect of siding with the ateneo professors. the previous and original statement released by the ateneo professors had this as the topic : “catholics in conscience can support the rh bill”. (click here: Catholics Can Support The RH Bill In Good Conscience – Ateneo Professors’ Position Paper RH Bill 5043)
clearly, fr. villarin is a man of high intellect with a genuine gift for communicating and words. it is also obvious he has a full understanding of his role, the ateneo professors and the school and its dynamics and core values. he has done his job well as president of the ateneo.
this is a proud day for ateneo and ateneans.
Memo to the University Community from the President
date posted: 2012-08-21 12:30:09
20 August 2012
Memo to: The University Community
Subject: HB 4244
Together with our leaders in the Catholic Church, the Ateneo de Manila University does not support the passage of House Bill 4244 (The Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health and Population and Development Bill). As many of these leaders have pointed out, the present form of the proposed bill contains provisions that could be construed to threaten constitutional rights as well as to weaken commonly shared human and spiritual values.
Now that the period for amendments is about to begin, I enjoin all in the Ateneo community to continue in-depth study of the present bill, and to support amendments to remove provisions that could be ambiguous or inimical from a legal, moral or religious perspective.
In connection with this, I call attention to the 192 members of our faculty who have grappled with the underlying issues in the context of Catholic social teaching, and who have spoken in their own voice in support of the bill. Though the University must differ from their position for the reasons stated above, I appreciate their social compassion and intellectual efforts, and urge them to continue in their discernment of the common good. As there is a spectrum of views on this ethical and public policy issue, I ask all those who are engaged in the Christian formation of our students to ensure that the Catholic position on this matter continues to be taught in our classes, as we have always done.
Should the bill with whatever amendments be passed, we should neither hesitate to bring to the judiciary whatever legal questions we may have nor cease to be vigilant in ensuring that no coercion takes place in implementation.
If there is no easy answer to the concerns that the proposed bill raises or no facile unanimity among divergent views, this only proves the complexity, depth, and sensitivity of these concerns. Nevertheless, Catholic tradition has always taught that reason and faith are not enemies but allies in the service of God’s truth. From this tradition, we can draw strength and compassion in our often tortuous journey as persons in community toward the greater glory of God and the service of God’s people.
Jose Ramon T Villarin SJ
Categories: Celebrations, reproductive health, RH Bill 5043Tags: ateneans rh bill, ateneo de manila, ateneo de manila university, ateneo professors, ateneo professors for rh bill, ateneo professors support RH Bill 5043, ateneo rh bill, fr. jett villarin sj, House Bill 4244, professors for rh bill, reproductive health, reproductive health bill 5043, RH Bill, RH Bill 4244, rhbill
Not to be confused with The Honourable Company of Air Pilots, formerly known as GAPAN.
Gapan, officially the City of Gapan, (Tagalog: Lungsod ng Gapan), is a 4th class city in the province of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 110,303 people.
Gapan is nicknamed the "Footwear Capital of the North", and it is an inseparable part of the Rice Granary of the Philippines.
Gapan is located in the southern part of the province, it is bounded to the north by Peñaranda and San Leonardo, to the east by the Gen. Tinio, to the south by San Miguel in neighboring Bulacan province, and to the west by San Isidro.
Gapan is politically subdivided into 23 barangays.
- Puting Tubig
- San Lorenzo
- San Nicolas
- San Roque
- San Vicente
- Santa Cruz
- Santo Cristo Norte
- Santo Cristo Sur
- Santo Niño
Old records called the town Ibon. Gapan was founded by the Spanish curates and officials who, in their early occupation, exercised great influence over the people and the things they were doing. History places Gapan as one of the first towns of Pampanga founded sometime in the middle part of the sixteenth century. Records of the first Catholic mission to the far east indicated that in 1595, Fathers Contres Tendilla, Caballo and Salazar were responsible for clearing the forest which later became a pueblo; in this pueblo, a church, presedencia and residential houses made of bricks and lime were constructed, now the age-old landmarks of the city.
Its foundation in 1595 makes Gapan the oldest town in Nueva Ecija and one of the oldest in the Philippines, it was likewise a big pueblo embracing an area as far as Cabanatuan City in the north, which was its barrio with the name Cabanatuan before it separated in 1750: the Sierra Madres in the East, San Miguel, Bulacan in the south and Candaba, Pampanga in the West. Gradually as the Spanish power waned and economic progress caught up in the area, the pueblo disintegrated into many pueblos until it remained to comprise only the towns of Peñaranda, General Tinio and San Leonardo (formerly called Manikling) all of Nueva Ecija province. In fact the Patron Saint Divina Pastora had its origin or residence in Barrio Callos, Peñaranda.
In 1942, the occupation by the Japanese forces in Gapan, Nueva Ecija, In 1945, entering by the Filipino troops of the 2nd, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 25th & 26th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army took Gapan together with the Novo Ecijano guerrilla resistance, Hukbalahap Communist rebel forces and the American liberation military forces of the United States Army at the end of World War II.
By virtue of Republic Act No. 9022 and its ratification in a plebiscite subsequently held on August 25, 2001, Gapan was converted into a component city of Nueva Ecija. Ernesto L. Natividad became the first city mayor of Gapan.
Liberation and the Battle of Gapan
After the Japanese air raid bombing and fighter planes invaded the town of Gapan on December 1941 during the Japanese Invasion through the occupation by the Imperial Japanese Army forces entered in Gapan on 1942 during the Japanese Occupation. When the aftermath of the retreated by all the local Novo Ecijaño guerrilla resistance and the Hukbalahap Communist guerrilla groups was the main invading commands was around side by side in the municipality of Gapan and attacking by all Imperial Japanese Army forces from the couple of few months and four years after the Counter-Insurgencies during the Japanese Occupation from 1942 to 1945 and before the main battle commands of all joint Filipino troops under the Philippine Commonwealth Army units and the American troops under the United States Army units was liberated in Gapan on 1945 during the fighting of main battle stages.
Beginning the Battle of Gapan on January to August 1945 during the Allied Liberation, the liberators of all combined military force of the Filipino troops under the Philippine Commonwealth Army 2nd, 3rd, 22nd, 23rd, 25th & 26th Infantry Division and the American liberating soldiers of the United States Army was recaptured and invading to around the municipality of Gapan on January 1945 to aiding the local Novo Ecijaño guerrilla resistance and the Hukbalahap Communist guerrilla groups and attacked and defeating Japanese Imperial Army forces and Makapili rebel fighters.
From January to August 1945, the many stronghold of all combined military forces of the Filipino soldiers, military officers, tank commanders, military IFV's, military trucks and jeeps, artillery and mortars and many other military equipments under the 2nd, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, 25th & 26th Infantry Division of the Philippine Commonwealth Army and the American soldiers, military officers, tank commanders, military IFV's, military trucks and jeeps, artillery and mortars and many other military equipments under the United States Army was captured and invading the military battles, sieges and invading commands are bombed and destroyed around the plains, green fields, rice fields, rivers, forests and many others are burned and they captured and invading the battle, local military raids and invading commands are bombed and destroyed around the streets, old buildings and houses, villages, Roman Catholic churches, municipal town halls, town plazas and many others through aiding the local Novo Ecijaño guerrilla resistance and the Hukbalahap Communist guerrilla groups was side by side by attacked and defeating Japanese Imperial Army forces and Makapili militias from the couple of seven months and one year during the liberating battles, sieges, local military raids and invading the municipal town of Gapan during the liberation.
Start the joint and combined Allied military and guerrilla main sieges and invasions of the military field camps and garrisons of the Imperial Japanese Armed Forces and the Makapili headquarters in the municipal town of Gapan, the stronghold of all combined Filipino soldiers and officers under the Philippine Commonwealth Army units, the American soldiers of the United States Army units and local Novo Ecijano resistance groups was invaded and attacking sieges of the military field camps and garrisons of the Imperial Japanese Armed Forces and the headquarters of the Makapili was entering the camps and they inside to main attack and fought against the Japanese Imperial Army soldiers and Makapili rebels. The aftermath of the Allied Filipino and American sieges and invasions of the Imperial Japanese Armed Forces and Makapili militia groups in Gapan, the decisive successfully victories of all the stronghold the joint Filipino troops and officers of the Philippine Commonwealth Army units, the American soldiers of the United States Army units and local Novo Ecijano resistance fighters are saluted and captured and retaking the Japanese field camps and garrisons and the Makapili headquarters at the town municipalities after the fighting commands and surrendered and retreating Japanese troops and Makapili rebel forces.
Meanwhile, the re-taken and capturing of the Japanese military field camps and garrisons and the headquarters of the Makapili in Gapan was there inside by the joint military forces of the Filipino soldiers and officers under the Philippine Commonwealth Army units and the American soldiers of the United States Army units including the local Novo Ecijano guerrilla resistance was pole flag raising of down of the Japanese flag for the Imperial Japanese military through the capturing and taken the up of the joint United States flag and the Philippine war flag for the joint United States and Philippine Commonwealth military after the fighting of the siege and invading commands for the victorious of the stronghold combined Filipinos and Americans.
The Aftermath of the Battle of Gapan on August 1945, the local Philippine Commonwealth military and Novo Ecijano guerrilla resistance casualties during the fighting and succeeding battles, invasions and sieges includes of all Filipino troops and officers of the Philippine Commonwealth Army 2nd, 3rd, 22nd, 23rd, 25th & 26th Infantry Division was over 4,470 killed in action and over 15,300 wounded in action, the American troops and officers of the United States Army was over 2,400 killed in action and over 6,000 wounded in action, while the local Novo Ecijano guerrilla resistance groups was suffered over 400 killed in action and over 1,140 wounded in action, the Hukbalahap Communist groups over 720 killed in action and over 1,350 wounded in action. From the part of Japanese Imperial Army forces over 25,000 killed in action, 58,000 wounded in action and over 14,000 captured in action, the Makapili militia groups over 400 killed in action, 670 wounded in action and over 1,260 captured in action, the joint Filipino soldiers and officers under the Philippine Commonwealth Army units and the American soldiers and officers of the United States Army units include with the local Novo Ecijano and Hukbalahap Communist resistance fighters to saluted on their decisive successfully victories after the invasions, sieges and battle main commands as they captured the municipal town of Gapan after the war.
|Population census of Gapan|
|Source: Philippine Statistics Authority|
Current major sources of income include farming, slipper making, fishponds, poultry and piggery, and commercial establishments.
The city of Gapan held tremendous promise not only in its natural resources but also in its potentials in agri base industries and in footwear industries which help sustain its virtual role in agricultural and industrial production. Commercial and trade activities in the city are further accelerated by the influx of financing lending institution and new businesses.
Shopping Centers and Supermarkets
- Fiesta Shopping Center
- Waltermart Gapan
- Primark Town Center
Places of interest
- National Shrine of Virgen La Divina Pastora
- The center of Marian pilgrimages during the months of April and May is the National Shrine of Virgen La Divina Pastora as declared by the Catholic Bishops Conference in 1986.
Colleges in Gapan City
Notable people of Gapan
Dry Market and the Water District
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Gapan.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gapan City.|